Brazil Moving to Lift Ban on Genetically Modified Terminator Seeds

Despite United Nations policy, Brazil is set to start using suicidal, terminator seed technology.

| March 4, 2014

  • Planting Seeds
    Genetically-modified 'terminator' seeds are said to threaten the livelihoods of millions of small farmers around the world.
    Photo by Fotolia/alexharkov

  • Planting Seeds

Remember terminator seeds?  They’re coming back in Brazil.

The word "terminator" refers to genetically engineered seed that dies at harvest, obliging farmers to purchase new seed every growing season.

Here’s the latest news on this highly controversial GMO technology, from The Guardian newspaper in Great Britain:

"Brazil is set to break a global moratorium on genetically-modified 'terminator' seeds, which are said to threaten the livelihoods of millions of small farmers around the world.

"The sterile or 'suicide' seeds are produced by means of genetic use restriction technology, which makes crops die off after one harvest without producing offspring. As a result, farmers have to buy new seeds for each planting, which reduces their self-sufficiency and makes them dependent on major seed and chemical companies.

"Environmentalists fear that any such move by Brazil – one of the biggest agricultural producers on the planet – could produce a domino effect that would result in the worldwide adoption of the controversial technology.

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